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Coronavirus fears cancel school visit

Coronavirus fears cancel school visit

Friday 24 January 2020

Coronavirus fears cancel school visit


A Beijing college has cancelled its planned visit to a Jersey secondary school as a "precaution" following the outbreak of the deadly coronavirus in China.

Staff and students from Bayi School had planned to spend three days at Hautlieu School from next Tuesday.

However, a statement issued this afternoon by Jersey's Children, Young People, Education and Skills Department (CYPES) explained that they had since taken the decision to cancel the visit.

Pictured: Staff and students from Bayi School were meant to visit Hautlieu next Tuesday.

It read: "On Tuesday 28 January, Hautlieu School was due to host students and staff from Bayi School, Beijing for three days. Since the emergence of the coronavirus, the Head of Hautlieu has been liaising with Health and Education/CYPES colleagues, as well as his counterparts at Bayi School.

"Although the focus remains on Wuhan and the definition of a probable case remains unchanged with a requirement for travel to or from Wuhan or contact with a case within 14 days of onset of respiratory symptoms, the number of new cases in the last 24-48 hours has led the principal from Bayi school to cancel the trip as a precaution. This anticipates local re- assessment of risk based on the recent further evolution of the outbreak."

The news comes as China continues to widen travel restrictions in Hubei province, which is at the centre of the outbreak.

The death toll has reached 26, while there are more than 800 confirmed cases of infection nationally, spread across 13 provinces, and key areas such as Beijing and Shanghai.

Unable to be treated with antiviral flu drugs, the illness has now spread outside China and there are cases in Thailand, South Korea, Taiwan, Japan and the US.

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Pictured: There have been no confirmed cases in Jersey or the UK.

There are no confirmed cases in the UK or Channel Islands, but the UK government has called an emergency Cobra meeting to discuss measures in place to handle any cases.

Sufferers of coronavirus are reported to suffer fever, coughs and breathing difficulties, with some cases leading to organ failure.

Jersey Consultant Microbiologist Dr Ivan Muscat said that the island was monitoring the situation "carefully".

He commented: "The Emergency Committee of the World Health Organization yesterday did not class the outbreak with the new virus as a public health emergency of international concern due to the relatively small number of cases and the response put in place in China. This committee is due to reconvene in approximately ten days time to re-assess the situation.

“Evidence about the respiratory virus is still being gathered. The extent of human-to-human transmission of the virus is still not clear and travel restrictions are in place within China to help prevent the spread of the virus. Monitoring for possible cases continues in other countries including Europe, the UK and Jersey.

"There have been no confirmed cases in the UK to date and no possible cases in Jersey.”

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